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Tourism to Be Given Industry Status: SAPM

August 17, 2023

FAISALABAD: According to Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) Azam Jamil, tourism will be given the status of an industry, governed by the private sector, with the government acting as a facilitator and regulator.

He said that the government has finally agreed to transfer control of the Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) to the provinces while speaking at a dinner reception hosted by the Pakistan Economic Conference (PEC) in partnership with the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI). All of the PTDC’s hotels, motels, and other assets, he claimed, would be given to the provinces with the understanding that they would turn them over to the private sector within two months.

According to him, the government should serve as a facilitator rather than acting as the owner of businesses. According to him, due to the hiring of unqualified individuals, 33 to 35 motels have been vacant for the past 10 years. He declared that the PTDC would be reorganised. Imran Khan, the prime minister, would shortly develop a national-level e-portal on tourism.

He said that a single website had been created that contained all pertinent data regarding tourism establishments and their managers. According to him, the government has identified potential tourist destinations where local and international companies might build the necessary amenities.

He claimed that the idea of village tourism had been established and would significantly contribute to the promotion of the nation’s cultural variety. It was a World Bank-funded project that would draw tourists from abroad to the picturesque valleys of the north. In a similar vein, he noted, Chitral would also see the development of a ski resort, which would be a distinctive draw for both domestic and foreign tourists.

He emphasised the necessity of a road communication system and noted how odd it was that a 300 km section of the Silk Road lacked the essential convenience that every traveller needs: a bathroom. Along with other related services, the government is working to standardise hotels, the official continued.

He claimed that the hospitality sector needed skilled individuals to handle it, and as a result, schools were being constructed around the nation.

Mr. Jamil also gave a thorough presentation on Pakistan’s tourism potential and the actions the government is taking to involve the commercial sector.

Khayal Ahmad Kastro, the provincial minister for culture and industry, also spoke at the event and noted that March 14 marked Punjab Culture Day for the first time in the province’s history.

He claimed that as the minister for colonies, he expropriated 200,000 acres of state land that had been invaded by land speculators. He claimed that the land was worth about Rs. 450 billion.

He praised PM Khan for hosting a meeting of foreign ministers from Islamic nations and added that his approach was crucial in reviving Pakistan’s industrial sector.

Atif Munir Sheikh, president of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI), Mian Mohammad Idrees, deputy commissioner of Faisalabad Ali Shehzad, and PEC coordinator Azhar Chaudhry gave Mr Jamil FCCI shields during the event.

Businesspeople and their families from all around the nation attended the meal while dressed in their traditional attire.

The president of FCCI received a traditional chador.

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